Sunday, December 12, 2010

Why Didn't Somebody Tell Me This About E-books

I've been talking here and on multiple forums about comparisons with E-books and paper books.  One thing that many have commented on is that there really isn't much money saved on e-books from best selling authors.  Well last week I broke down and bought an iPad.  First thing I did was download some free educational apps for my kindergarten son.  Mostly math.  But when he was willing to put it down, I downloaded a couple of e-reader programs (Kindle and the iPad reader).

I found something that I haven't heard anybody discussing about e-readers.  To me, this is where you can save money on the best sellers.  Nobody told me that you can download free parts of books.  From the books I've read, it's usually the first 30+ pages.  Just enough to let you know if you'll really be interested in the book.  If you like it, you buy the full book obviously. 

Naturally the cost saving is obvious.  If you don't like the book after the first 30 pages, you've lost nothing.  This also highlights the importance of hooking your reader early.  A general guideline I've heard and recommend when I critique is that the first chapter of any book has two functions.  Introduce the main character (or at least one) and set the direction for the plot. 

Another consideration is that, from what I've heard, if you go to Barnes and Noble with a Nook, you can read any e-book there for an hour.  If you go back frequently enough, you could probably read an entire book free.  Stop by, get a coffee (if they have a coffee store) and read your Nook.

Keep that in mind and

Write On.

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